Blayne Haggart, Associate Professor of Political Science at Brock University, had a piece recently published in The Conversation about Canada’s reliance on free trade and the problems that come with that ideology.
“Existential crises that threaten one’s entire society have a way of forcing us to see the world as it truly is. The coronavirus pandemic is no exception. Canada, once mocked by South Park as “not even a real country anyway,” has come together in remarkable fashion. Canadians and their leaders, from every region and across the political spectrum, are all pushing in the same direction.
But while the pandemic has showcased the country’s inspiring cohesiveness, it has also revealed the tragic costs, measured in lives lost and economic opportunity squandered, of Canada’s continued adherence to a one-dimensional ideology that long ago passed its best-before date.
Since the 1990s, Canadian economic development policy has been anchored in two words: free trade. The previously widely accepted notion that countries should have an industrial policy — a strategy for encouraging strong and desirable economic growth — was cast aside in the single-minded pursuit of comprehensive trade agreements.”
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